1 F2013abn
1
Reinforced Concrete Design
Notation:
a = depth of the effective compression
block in a concrete beam
A = name for area
A
g
= gross area, equal to the total area
ignoring any reinforcement
A
s
= area of steel reinforcement in
concrete beam design
= area of steel compression
reinforcement in concrete beam
design
A
st
= area of steel reinforcement in
concrete column design
A
v
= area of concrete shear stirrup
reinforcement
ACI = American Concrete Institute
b = width, often crosssectional
b
E
= effective width of the flange of a
concrete T beam cross section
b
f
= width of the flange
b
w
= width of the stem (web) of a
concrete T beam cross section
cc = shorthand for clear cover
C = name for centroid
= name for a compression force
C
c
= compressive force in the
compression steel in a doubly
reinforced concrete beam
C
s
= compressive force in the concrete
of a doubly reinforced concrete
beam
d = effective depth from the top of a
reinforced concrete beam to the
centroid of the tensile steel
d = effective depth from the top of a
reinforced concrete beam to the
centroid of the compression steel
d
b
= bar diameter of a reinforcing bar
D = shorthand for dead load
DL = shorthand for dead load
E = modulus of elasticity or Youngs
modulus
= shorthand for earthquake load
E
c
= modulus of elasticity of concrete
E
s
= modulus of elasticity of steel
f = symbol for stress
f
c
= compressive stress
= concrete design compressive stress
f
s
= stress in the steel reinforcement for
concrete design
= compressive stress in the
compression reinforcement for
concrete beam design
f
y
= yield stress or strength
F = shorthand for fluid load
F
y
= yield strength
G = relative stiffness of columns to
beams in a rigid connection, as is +
h = crosssection depth
H = shorthand for lateral pressure load
h
f
= depth of a flange in a T section
I
transformed
= moment of inertia of a multi
material section transformed to one
material
k = effective length factor for columns
= length of beam in rigid joint
= length of column in rigid joint
l
d
= development length for reinforcing
steel
= development length for hooks
l
n
= clear span from face of support to
face of support in concrete design
L = name for length or span length, as is
l
= shorthand for live load
L
r
= shorthand for live roof load
LL = shorthand for live load
M
n
= nominal flexure strength with the
steel reinforcement at the yield
stress and concrete at the concrete
design strength for reinforced
concrete beam design
M
u
=
maximum moment from factored
loads for LRFD beam design
n = modulus of elasticity
transformation coefficient for steel
to concrete
n.a. = shorthand for neutral axis (N.A.)
pH = chemical alkalinity
P = name for load or axial force vector
s
A'
c
f '
s
f'
b
dh
l
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
2
P
o
= maximum axial force with no
concurrent bending moment in a
reinforced concrete column
P
n
= nominal column load capacity in
concrete design
P
u
= factored column load calculated
from load factors in concrete design
R = shorthand for rain or ice load
R
n
= concrete beam design ratio =
M
u
/bd
2
s = spacing of stirrups in reinforced
concrete beams
S = shorthand for snow load
t = name for thickness
T = name for a tension force
= shorthand for thermal load
U = factored design value
V
c
= shear force capacity in concrete
V
s
= shear force capacity in steel shear
stirrups
V
u
= shear at a distance of d away from
the face of support for reinforced
concrete beam design
w
c
= unit weight of concrete
w
DL
= load per unit length on a beam from
dead load
w
LL
= load per unit length on a beam from
live load
w
self wt
= name for distributed load from self
weight of member
w
u
= load per unit length on a beam from
load factors
W = shorthand for wind load
x = horizontal distance
= distance from the top to the neutral
axis of a concrete beam
y = vertical distance
= coefficient for determining stress
block height, a, based on concrete
strength,
= elastic beam deflection
= strain
= resistance factor
= resistance factor for compression
= density or unit weight
= radius of curvature in beam
deflection relationships
= reinforcement ratio in concrete
beam design = A
s
/bd
= balanced reinforcement ratio in
concrete beam design
= shear strength in concrete design
Reinforced Concrete Design
Structural design standards for reinforced concrete are established by the Building Code and
Commentary (ACI 31811) published by the American Concrete
Institute International, and uses ultimate strength design.
Materials
f
c
= concrete compressive design strength at 28 days (units of psi
when used in equations)
Deformed reinforcing bars come in grades 40, 60 & 75 (for 40 ksi,
60 ksi and 75 ksi yield strengths). Sizes are given as # of 1/8 up
to #8 bars. For #9 and larger, the number is a nominal size (while
the actual size is larger).
1

c
f '
A
c

c

balanced
c
u
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
3
Reinforced concrete is a composite material, and the average density is considered to be 150 lb/ft
3
.
It has the properties that it will creep (deformation with long term load) and shrink (a result of
hydration) that must be considered.
Plane sections of composite materials can still
be assumed to be plane (strain is linear), but the
stress distribution is not the same in both
materials because the modulus of elasticity is
different. (f=Ec)
In order to determine the stress, we can define n
as the ratio of the elastic moduli:
n is used to transform the width of the second material such that it sees the equivalent element
stress.
Transformed Section y and I
In order to determine stresses in all types of
material in the beam, we transform the materials
into a single material, and calculate the location of
the neutral axis and modulus of inertia for that
material.
ex: When material 1 above is concrete and material 2 is steel:
to transform steel into concrete
concrete
steel
E
E
E
E
n = =
1
2
to find the neutral axis of the equivalent concrete member we transform the width of the
steel by multiplying by n
to find the moment of inertia of the equivalent concrete member, I
transformed
, use the new
geometry resulting from transforming the width of the steel
concrete stress:
d transforme
concrete
I
My
f =
steel stress:
d transforme
steel
I
Myn
f =
y E
E f
1
1 1
= =
y E
E f
2
2 2
= =
1
2
E
E
n =
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
4
Reinforced Concrete Beam Members
Ultimate Strength Design for Beams
The ultimate strength design method is similar to LRFD. There is a nominal strength that is
reduced by a factor  which must exceed the factored design stress. For beams, the concrete
only works in compression over a rectangular stress block above the n.a. from elastic
calculation, and the steel is exposed and reaches the yield stress, F
y
For stress analysis in reinforced concrete beams
 the steel is transformed to concrete
 any concrete in tension is assumed to be cracked and
to have no strength
 the steel can be in tension, and is placed in the bottom
of a beam that has positive bending moment
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
5
0
2
= ) x d ( nA
x
bx
s
The neutral axis is where there is no stress and no strain. The concrete above the n.a. is in
compression. The concrete below the n.a. is considered ineffective. The steel below the n.a. is
in tension.
Because the n.a. is defined by the moment areas, we can solve for x knowing that d is the
distance from the top of the concrete section to the centroid of the steel:
x can be solved for when the equation is rearranged into the generic format with a, b & c in the
binomial equation: 0
2
= + + c bx ax by
a
ac b b
x
2
4
2
=
Tsections
If the n.a. is above the bottom of a flange in a T
section, x is found as for a rectangular section.
If the n.a. is below the bottom of a flange in a T
section, x is found by including the flange and the
stem of the web (b
w
) in the moment area calculation:
Load Combinations  (Alternative values allowed)
1.4D
1.2D + 1.6L + 0.5(L
r
or S or R)
1.2D + 1.6(L
r
or S or R) + (1.0L or 0.5W)
1.2D + 1.0W + 1.0L + 0.5(L
r
or S or R)
1.2D + 1.0E + 1.0L + 0.2S
0.9D + 1.0W
0.9D + 1.0E
( )
( )
0 ) x d ( nA
2
h x
b h x
2
h
x h b
s
f
w f
f
f f
=
+

.

\

f f
b
w
b
w
h
f
h
f
b
A
s
a/2
T T
n.a.
C
C
x a=

1
x
0.85f
c
actual stress Whitney stress block
d
h
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
6
Internal Equilibrium
C = compression in concrete = stress x area = 0.85 f
c
ba
T = tension in steel = stress x area = A
s
f
y
C = T and M
n
= T(da/2)
where f
c
= concrete compression strength
a = height of stress block
b = width of stress block
f
y
= steel yield strength
A
s
= area of steel reinforcement
d = effective depth of section
(depth to n.a. of reinforcement)
With C=T, A
s
f
y =
0.85 f
c
ba so a can be determined with
b f
f A
a
c
y s
'
=
85 . 0
Criteria for Beam Design
For flexure design:
M
u
s M
n
 = 0.9 for flexure (when the section is tension controlled)
so, M
u
can be set =M
n
=T(da/2) =  A
s
f
y
(da/2)
Reinforcement Ratio
The amount of steel reinforcement is limited. Too much reinforcement, or overreinforced will
not allow the steel to yield before the concrete crushes and there is a sudden failure. A beam
with the proper amount of steel to allow it to yield at failure is said to be under reinforced.
The reinforcement ratio is just a fraction:
bd
A
s
= (or p) and must be less than a value
determined with a concrete strain of 0.003 and tensile strain of 0.004 (minimum). When the
strain in the reinforcement is 0.005 or greater, the section is tension controlled. (For smaller
strains the resistance factor reduces to 0.65 see tied columns  because the stress is less than the
yield stress in the steel.) Previous codes limited the amount to 0.75
balanced
where
balanced
was
determined from the amount of steel that would make the concrete start to crush at the exact
same time that the steel would yield based on strain.
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
7
Flexure Design of Reinforcement
One method is to wisely estimate a height of the stress block, a, and solve for A
s
, and calculate
a new value for a using M
u
.
1. guess a (less than n.a.)
2.
y
c
s
f
ba f .
A
'
=
85 0
3. solve for a from
M
u
= A
s
f
y
(da/2) :


.

\

=
y s
u
f A
M
d a

2
4. repeat from 2. until a found from step 3 matches a used in step 2.
Design Chart Method:
1. calculate
2
bd
M
R
n
n
=
2. find curve for f
c
and f
y
to get
3. calculate A
s
and a
and bd A
s
=
b f
f A
a
c
y s
'
=
85 . 0
Any method can simplify the size of d
using h = 1.1d
Maximum Reinforcement
Based on the limiting strain of
0.005 in the steel, x(or c) = 0.375d so
) d . ( a 375 0
1
 = to find A
smax
(
1
is shown in the table above)
Minimum Reinforcement
Minimum reinforcement is provided
even if the concrete can resist the
tension. This is a means to control
cracking.
Minimum required:
but not less than:
where
c
f ' is in psi. This can be translated to but not less than
for which  is permitted to be 0.9
(tensile strain of 0.004)
from Reinforced Concrete, 7th,
Wang, Salmon, Pincheira, Wiley & Sons, 2007
y
c
f
f '
=
3
min
y
f
200
) d
w
b (
y
f
c
f
s
A
'
=
3
) d
w
b (
y
f
s
A
200
=
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
8
Compression Reinforcement
If a section is doubly reinforced, it means
there is steel in the beam seeing
compression. The force in the
compression steel at yield is equal to
stress x area, C
s
= A
c
F
y
. The total
compression that balances the tension is
now: T = C
c
+ C
s
. And the moment taken
about the centroid of the compression
stress is M
n
= T(da/2)+C
s
(ad)
where A
s
is the area of compression reinforcement, and d is the effective depth to the
centroid of the compression reinforcement
Tsections (pan joists)
T beams have an effective width, b
E
, that sees
compression stress in a wide flange beam or
joist in a slab system.
For interior Tsections, b
E
is the smallest of
L/4, b
w
+ 16t, or center to center of beams
For exterior Tsections, b
E
is the smallest of
b
w
+ L/12, b
w
+ 6t, or b
w
+ (clear distance to next beam)
When the web is in tension the minimum reinforcement required is the same as for rectangular
sections with the web width (b
w
) in place of b.
When the flange is in tension (negative bending), the
minimum reinforcement required is the greater value of or
where
c
f ' is in psi, b
w
is the beam width, and b
f
is the effective flange width
Cover for Reinforcement
Cover of concrete over/under the reinforcement must be provided to protect the steel from
corrosion. For indoor exposure, 3/4 inch is required for slabs, 1.5 inch is typical for beams, and
for concrete cast against soil, 3 inches is typical.
Bar Spacing
Minimum bar spacings are specified to allow proper consolidation of concrete around the
reinforcement.
) (
6
d b
f
f
A
w
y
c
s
'
= ) (
3
d b
f
f
A
f
y
c
s
'
=
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
9
Slabs
One way slabs can be designed as one unit
wide beams. Because they are thin, control of
deflections is important, and minimum depths
are specified, as is minimum reinforcement for
shrinkage and crack control when not in
flexure. Reinforcement is commonly small
diameter bars and welded wire fabric.
Maximum spacing between bars is also
specified for shrinkage and crack control as
five times the slab thickness not exceeding
18. For required flexure reinforcement
spacing the limit is three times the slab
thickness not exceeding 18.
Shrinkage and temperature reinforcement (and minimum for flexure reinforcement):
Minimum for slabs with grade 40 or 50 bars: 002 . 0 = =
bt
A
s
or A
smin
= 0.002bt
Minimum for slabs with grade 60 bars: 0018 . 0 = =
bt
A
s
or A
smin
= 0.0018bt
Shear Behavior
Horizontal shear stresses occur
along with bending stresses to cause
tensile stresses where the concrete
cracks. Vertical reinforcement is
required to bridge the cracks which
are called shear stirrups.
The maximum shear for design, V
u
is the value at a distance of d from the face of the support.
Nominal Shear Strength
The shear force that can be resisted is the shear stress cross section area: d b V
w c c
=v
The shear stress for beams (one way)
c c
f ' = 2 v so d b f V
w c c
' = 2  
where b
w
= the beam width or the minimum width of the stem.
Oneway joists are allowed an increase of 10% V
c
if the joists are closely spaced.
Stirrups are necessary for strength (as well as crack control):
s
d f A
V
y v
s
=
where A
v
= area of all vertical legs of stirrup
s = spacing of stirrups
d = effective depth
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
10
For shear design:
V
U
s V
c +
V
s
 = 0.75 for shear
Spacing Requirements
Stirrups are required when V
u
is greater than
2
V
c

Economical spacing of stirrups is considered to be greater than d/4. Common
spacings of d/4, d/3 and d/2 are used to determine the values of V
s
at which
the spacings can be increased.
This figure shows the size of V
n
provided by V
c
+ V
s
(long dashes) exceeds V
u
/ in a stepwise
function, while the spacing provided (short dashes) is at or less than the required s (limited by
the maximum allowed). (Note that the maximum shear permitted from the stirrups is d b f
w c
' 8
The minimum recommended spacing for the first stirrup is 2 inches from the face of the support.
s
d f A
V
y v
s

 =
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
11
Torsional Shear Reinforcement
On occasion beam members will see twist along the
access caused by an eccentric shape supporting a load,
like on an Lshaped spandrel (edge) beam. The torsion
results in shearing stresses, and closed stirrups may be
needed to resist the stress that the concrete cannot resist.
Development Length for Reinforcement
Because the design is based on the reinforcement attaining the yield stress, the reinforcement
needs to be properly bonded to the concrete for a finite length (both sides) so it wont slip. This
is referred to as the development length, l
d
. Providing sufficient length to anchor bars that need
to reach the yield stress near the end of connections are also specified by hook lengths.
Detailing reinforcement is a tedious job. Splices are also necessary to extend the length of
reinforcement that come in standard lengths. The equations are not provided here.
Development Length in Tension
With the proper bar to bar spacing and cover, the common development length equations are:
#6 bars and smaller:
c
y b
d
f
F d
l
'
=
25
or 12 in. minimum
#7 bars and larger:
c
y b
d
f
F d
l
'
=
20
or 12 in. minimum
Development Length in Compression
y b
c
y b
d
F d .
f
F d .
l 0003 0
02 0
s
'
=
Hook Bends and Extensions
The minimum hook length is
c
b
dh
f
d
l
'
=
1200
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
12
Modulus of Elasticity & Deflection
E
c
for deflection calculations can be used with the transformed section modulus in the elastic
range. After that, the cracked section modulus is calculated and E
c
is adjusted.
Code values:
c c
f E ' = 000 , 57 (normal weight)
c c c
f w E ' = 33
5 . 1
, w
c
= 90 lb/ft
3
 160 lb/ft
3
Deflections of beams and oneway slabs need not be computed if the overall member thickness
meets the minimum specified by the code, and are shown in Table 9.5(a) (see Slabs).
Criteria for Flat Slab & Plate System Design
Systems with slabs and supporting beams, joists or columns typically have multiple bays. The
horizontal elements can act as oneway or twoway systems. Most often the flexure resisting
elements are continuous, having positive and negative bending moments. These moment and
shear values can be found using beam tables, or from code specified approximate design factors.
Flat slab twoway systems have drop panels (for shear), while flat plates do not.
Two way shear at columns is resisted by the thickness of the slab at a perimeter of d/2 away from
the face of the support by the shear stress cross section area: d b V
o c c
=v
The shear stress (two way)
c c
f ' = 4 v so d b f V
o c c
' = 4  
where b
o
= perimeter length.
Criteria for Column Design
(American Concrete Institute) ACI 31811 Code and Commentary:
P
u
s 
c
P
n
where
P
u
is a factored load
 is a resistance factor
P
n
is the nominal load capacity (strength)
Load combinations, ex: 1.4D (D is dead load)
1.2D + 1.6L (L is live load)
1.2D + 1.6L + 0.5W
(W is wind load)
0.90D + 1.0W
For compression, 
c
= 0.75 and P
n
= 0.85P
o
for spirally reinforced,

c
= 0.65 P
n
= 0.8P
o
for tied columns where
st y st g c o
A f ) A A ( f . P + ' = 85 0 and P
o
is the name of the maximum axial force with no concurrent bending moment.
Columns which have reinforcement ratios,
g
st
g
A
A
= , in the range of 1% to 2% will usually
be the most economical, with 1% as a minimum and 8% as a maximum by code.
Bars are symmetrically placed, typically.
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
13
Columns with Bending (BeamColumns)
Concrete columns rarely see only axial force and must be designed for the combined effects of
axial load and bending moment. The interaction diagram shows the reduction in axial load a
column can carry with a bending moment.
Design aids commonly present the
interaction diagrams in the form of
load vs. equivalent eccentricity for
standard column sizes and bars used.
Eccentric Design
The strength interaction diagram is
dependant upon the strain developed
in the steel reinforcement.
If the strain in the steel is less than the
yield stress, the section is said to be
compression controlled.
Below the transition zone, where the
steel starts to yield, and when the net
tensile strain in the reinforcement
exceeds 0.005 the section is said to be
tension controlled. This is a ductile
condition and is preferred.
Rigid Frames
Monolithically cast frames with beams
and column elements will have members
with shear, bending and axial loads.
Because the joints can rotate, the effective
length must be determined from methods
like that presented in the handout on Rigid
Frames. The charts for evaluating k for
nonsway and sway frames can be found
in the ACI code.
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
14
Frame Columns
Because joints can rotate in frames, the effective length of the column in a frame is harder to
determine. The stiffness (EI/L) of each member in a joint determines how rigid or flexible it is.
To find k, the relative stiffness, G or +, must be found for both ends, plotted on the alignment
charts, and connected by a line for braced and unbraced fames.
where
E = modulus of elasticity for a member
I = moment of inertia of for a member
l
c
= length of the column from center to center
l
b
= length of the beam from center to center
 For pinned connections we typically use a value of 10 for +.
 For fixed connections we typically use a value of 1 for +.
b
c
l
EI
l
EI
G
E
E
+ = =
Braced nonsway frame
Unbraced sway frame
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
15
Factored Moment Resistance of Concrete Beams, M
n
(kft) with f
c
= 4 ksi, f
y
=60 ksi
a
Approximate Values for a/d
0.1 0.2 0.3
Approximate Values for
b x d (in) 0.0057 0.01133 0.017
10 x 14 2 #6 2 #8 3 #8
53 90 127
10 x 18 3 #5 2 #9 3 #9
72 146 207
10 x 22 2 #7 3 #8 (3 #10)
113 211 321
12 x 16 2 #7 3 #8 4 #8
82 154 193
12 x 20 2 #8 3 #9 4 #9
135 243 306
12 x 24 2 #8 3 #9 (4 #10)
162 292 466
15 x 20 3 #7 4 #8 5 #9
154 256 383
15 x 25 3 #8 4 #9 4 #11
253 405 597
15 x 30 3 #8 5 #9 (5 #11)
304 608 895
18 x 24 3 #8 5 #9 6 #10
243 486 700
18 x 30 3 #9 6 #9 (6 #11)
385 729 1074
18 x 36 3 #10 6 #10 (7 #11)
586 1111 1504
20 x 30 3 # 10 7 # 9 6 # 11
489 851 1074
20 x 35 4 #9 5 #11 (7 #11)
599 1106 1462
20 x 40 6 #8 6 #11 (9 #11)
811 1516 2148
24 x 32 6 #8 7 #10 (8 #11)
648 1152 1528
24 x 40 6 #9 7 #11 (10 #11)
1026 1769 2387
24 x 48 5 #10 (8 #11) (13 #11)
1303 2426 3723
a
Table yields values of factored moment resistance in kipft with reinforcement indicated. Reinforcement choices
shown in parentheses require greater width of beam or use of two stack layers of bars. (Adapted and corrected from
Simplified Engineering for Architects and Builders, 11
th
ed, Ambrose and Tripeny, 2010.
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
16
Beam / OneWay Slab Design Flow Chart
NO
Collect data: L, e, , Allimits
,
hmin; find beam
charts for load cases and Aactual equations
(self weight = area x density)
Collect data: load factors, fy, fc
Find Vs & Mu from constructing diagrams
or using beam chart formulas with the
factored loads
(Vumax is at d away
from face of support)
Yes (on to shear reinforcement for beams)
Determine Mn required by
Mu/ , choose method
Select min s s max
Assume b & d (based
on hmin for slabs)
Find Rn
off chart with fy, fc and
select min s s max
Chart (Rn vs )
Choose b & d combination
based on Rn and hmin (slabs),
estimate h with 1 bars (#8)
Calculate As = bd
Select bar size and spacing to fit
width or 12 in strip of slab and not
exceed limits for crack control
Find new d / adjust h;
Is min s s max
?
Increase h, find d*
YES
Calculate a, Mn
NO
Is Mu s Mn?
Increase h, find d
ARCH 631 Note Set 10.1 F2013abn
17
Beam / OneWay Slab Design Flow Chart  continued
NO
Beam, Adequate for Flexure
Determine shear capacity of plain
concrete based on fc,
b & d
Is Vu (at d for beams) s Vc?
Beam?
NO
YES
YES
Increase h and reevaluate
flexure (As and Mn of
previous page)*
Determine Vs = (Vu  Vc
)
/
Is Vu < Vc?
YES
Slab?
YES
Determine s & As
Find where V
= Vc
and provide minimum
As and change s
Find where V
= Vc
and provide stirrups
just past that point
Yes (DONE)
Is Vs s ?
YES
NO
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